Armenians in US praise CIA chief

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Armenians in US praise CIA chief
Oluşturulma Tarihi: Ocak 14, 2009 00:00

WASHINGTON - The choice of a leading public figure as Obama’s nominee to head the Central Intelligence Agency has been praised by a major U.S. Armenian group.

The President-elect’s choice, Leon Panetta, was a strong backer of the move by the U.S. congress to recognize the 1915 incidents as "genocide." 

"During his years in Congress, Leon Panetta repeatedly expressed his support for affirmation of the Armenian genocide," said Bryan Ardouny, executive director of the Armenian Assembly of America, or AAA, according to a statement released by the group late Monday.  

"Coupled with President-elect Obama's decision to nominate Senator Hillary Clinton as secretary of state, who is on record in support of U.S. affirmation of the Armenian genocide, this nomination represents another step in restoring U.S. credibility in fighting genocide," Ardouny said.

Panetta represented a California congressional district from 1977 to 1993. He later became former president Bill Clinton's White House chief of staff. Many U.S. Armenians live in California, and most lawmakers from this state strongly support Armenian causes. "Panetta... made several floor statements commemorating the anniversary of the Armenian genocide," the AAA said. He needs to be confirmed by the Senate.
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